The Chianti Classico Collection 2022 event was the first for two years, due to Covid 19 restrictions. This made it a much awaited occasion for all the participants.
It was a visit I looked forward to with relish as I had previously tasted and reviewed nearly two hundred Chianti Classico and posted my findings. As a result, I now had the time to chat to the winemakers, meet old friends, hopefully make new ones and taste new wines. Also, I had the opportunity to thank all those wineries, that over the past few years sent wines to my office in Umbria to be reviewed: a trust that I do not take lightly.
Of course, when you have reviewed someone’s wine and imparted words of admiration and good points, the conversation is easy flowing and extremely congenial…The other side of the bottle, so to speak, is when you have received a wine that did not come up to expectation: then you would think conversation with the winemaker is not going to be so free flowing and joyful. On the contrary, these are the best of the conversations, where honesty and transparency are the order of the engagement: "did you agree with my assessment? In part? In total?" The ensuing exchange is always cordial and respectful and usually both parties learn something constructive from the other.
I found so much optimism in the massive room at Stazione Leopolda that houses the 180 or so wineries for this yearly event. Not only I can confidently state that Chianti Classico is producing better quality wines year on year, but its future has never been so positive.
Historic Vertical Chianti Classico Tasting CCC2022
Badia a Coltibuono CC 1958
Medium garnet in colour. Concentrated dry cherry, prune, black tea, faint clove notes. Still vibrant acidity on back end still holding it all together. Damp earth notes fade on the finish.
Castello di Monsanto CC 1969
Sangiovese forward feel to this wine. Dry cherry, liquorice notes, concentrated spice notes, sweet hibiscus notes. Delicate light texture. Shadow of its former self still visible. Sweet citrusy character on the back end.
Villa Calcinaia CC 1975
Pale Ruby red in colour. Dried spring flowers florals vie with aromatic wood.
Cool entry showing juicy inflections. Balanced and still showing good weight.
Spark of energy still present to the close.
Marchese Antinori CC 1985
Not a shy personality. Solid core of red fruit: cherry, red current and plum, liquorice root, pipe tobacco. Impressive complex minerality. Dry sage. Arrives at mid palate on two levels. Slightly drying tannins on the back end.
Lamole di Lamole CC 1993
Bright Ruby red in colour. Faint red fruits aromatics, orange blossom, liquorice notes, dry herbs, sage. Juicy mid palate expression followed by lightly drying tannins.
Bandini Villa Pomona CC 2009
Intense Ruby red in colour. Black fruits, leather, dried orange peel, warm earth. Showing juicy movements across mid palate and crushed stone minerality. Tapers on the back end.
Poggerino Vigna di Bugialla CC 2014
Deep ruby red in colour. Rich and compelling mix of black cherry and wild red berries. Waves of juicy fruits saturate the palate bringing freshness lifted by solid line of minerality. Loiters on the back end. Outstanding for 2014!
Anteprima Dievole CC 2020
Ruby red in colour with bright undertones. Dry cherry, black current, baked plum. Showing youthful tension and nervous acidity surrounding a solid core of ripe fruit. Dense and rich. Comes across as super extracted. Juicy close.
Castell’in Villa CC 1995
Intense ruby red in colour. Extraordinary bouquet of dark fruit and purple florals, cedar, liquorice and mint. Totally original and unique in its delivery. A wine that represents its terroir.
Note: When tasting a vertical of wines this varied in labels and age, one has to consider that you are not appreciating these wines on a level field: you are tasting them in isolation. Comparisons should not be made as the first three wines in particular deserve the respect of their age, and therefore are beyond, in my opinion the awarding of points.
I would personally like to thank, Filippo Bartolotta journalist, for his engaging presentation of this unique vertical tasting experience.
© Tony Wood Italian Wine 2022